A motorhome is a want or a luxury item by individuals and families who enjoy going on long road trips and outdoor adventures. Safe to say that you’re pouring hard-earned money into this buy to make your road trips more fun and comfortable. However, you can save some of your money when buying a used motorhome instead.
Just like any other major investment you’ll make, buying a used motorhome should begin with a must-have list. Your list should contain all the features you want in your new motorhome before you finally close the deal with reputable dealers like Wilderness Motorhome Sales or other dealerships near you. Because you’re buying a used one, this list should be even more detailed to ensure you don’t end up regretting your purchase.
Worry no more. This blog post will help you find the best-used motorhome for your needs and preferences.
Previous Owner’s Information
Anytime you’re shopping for anything used, it’s prudent to ask about the previous owner’s details. A good motorhome dealer should have information about the previous owner ready to disclose when asked. Ask for information about the previous owners, including
- previous owner’s name,
- whether bought brand-new or second-hand by the previous owner,
- years of usage,
- reason for selling the motorhome, and
- registration details.
Once you have the registration details, research more about the motorhome you’re keen on buying through that registration. That way, you’ll have access to its vehicle history report pertaining to matters like the motorhome’s repair history or any history of encumbrances or court case.
One of the best assurances you can have that a motorhome is of good quality is that it has gone through regular maintenance. This means that the previous owner wasn’t negligent with the periodic maintenance required of their vehicle. Regular maintenance should be at least twice a year or based on the motorhome’s mileage. The more up-to-date the maintenance records are, the better. That means you won’t have to worry as much about any major problems concerning the motorhome’s engine and roadworthiness.
Along with the maintenance records, some signs of regular maintenance are as follows:
- Roof: Is the roof clean? Are there any signs of paint chipping or rusting?
- Tires/wheels: Are the tires wearing out evenly? Is there any evidence of wheel-bearing greasing?
- Water Heater: Because the RV has been on display at the dealership for quite some time, the water heater may not have been recently used. Ask the dealer if they can run water through the tank so you can check for any signs of scaling or rust.
What Are Your Preferences?
Every motorhome has its respective features. However, not all those features will settle well with the preferences you’re looking for in your motorhome. The more features, the more expensive the motorhome will be. Doubtlessly, you wouldn’t want to pay extra for features you won’t use.
With that, it’s important to consider the following:
- Size of the water tank you need
- Cooking and storage space
- Exterior storage space for any sports or outdoor gear
- Room and cabin sizes
- Bed layouts
Signs Of Water Damage
Water damage is one of the biggest concerns you’ll potentially face with a used motorhome. Look around the windows and roof for any signs of this. Moreover, press on the walls to identify any previous water damage that the previous owners might not have disclosed to the dealership.
Water damage should be the first item you must check before signing on the dotted line. Expert motorhome owners will tell you that even the slightest sign of water damage should be reason enough for you not to push through with the purchase. One soft spot might turn out to be a bigger problem than you realize, and that’s the last thing you’ll want to face after spending hard-earned money on your motorhome.
Signs Of Mold
Even when you can’t find any signs of water damage, this doesn’t mean you should let your guard down. Look for any signs of mold around the motorhome. Molds are indicative of leaks or other water problems that might not yet be immediately apparent or visible.
Mold problems can be expensive to fix. You’ll need to buy cleaning products to deep-clean the areas affected by mold. In more severe cases, you might need to find a cleaning professional, which can add to your total cost. If you don’t get your motorhome cleaned of all mold growth, that can pose health issues to you and your family.
Even secondhand motorhomes can be quite expensive, so be sure to stick to your budget. There’s no reason to go beyond the budget you’ve set for a motorhome, especially when you’ve done your part to research and compare rates well enough.
The key to ensuring you’re getting the most value for your money is bringing a mechanic with you as you purchase your motorhome. Because this mechanic is independent (and not one who works for the previous owner or a dealer), you can count on their word whether the motorhome you’re buying is good to go.
Likewise, research the fair market value of the unit you’re buying. This gives you a better comparison regarding the price. What you’re buying is already used, so your sticker price should be significantly lower than the current market value for a brand-new one.
While still relatively cheaper than buying brand-new, buying a secondhand motorhome doesn’t mean you don’t have to be as stringent in your selection process. Even used motorhomes can still be more expensive than an average sedan, so the last thing you’d want is to choose a motorhome that ultimately wastes your money.
However, take not that there’s no such thing as the perfect motorhome. Rather, it’s about striking that perfect balance of your needs and those you can do without. With this blog post, you can find the right used motorhome for you. All the tips and advice from others can help guide you, but ultimately, the last say should come from you.